Standing tall overlooking Pensacola Bay, the historic Pensacola Lighthouse has been lighting up the coast since 1858 and remains in operation today. Pensacola is the second oldest city in the United States, and has been an important military location throughout history. The tower was commissioned by Congress and designed by engineer John Newton, an army general who fought in several battles on Florida ground. The lighthouse was only open for two years before the Civil War came to Pensacola, at which point they constructed the nearby battery of artillery and darkened the light to stay discreet.
Today the light in the tower is automated, but stories of those believed to haunt the lighthouse persist. It sits on the grounds of Naval Air Station Pensacola, home of the Blue Angels. Its significance in both the past and present has made it a landmark for the state of Florida. At the top of its 177 steps awaits an incredible view of the bay.
The lighthouse is open daily Monday to Saturday from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm and on Sundays from 12:30 to 5:30 pm. To get there driving from Interstate 10, exit at Pine Forest Road and follow the signs for the Museum of Naval Aviation. Adult admission is $6, with children, seniors, and active military admission costing $4.